I've seen a lot of lists of what to pack for the hospital and many of them were very, very long. I didn't pack nearly as much stuff as most of them suggested and still I overpacked. So I thought I'd share what I actually used, what I didn't use but would still pack again, and what I shouldn't have packed.
The Stuff I Used
Phone and charger - one list I read suggested an extension cord to make the charger reach the bed, which would have been handy but wasn't entirely essential
Nursing tank and pajama pants - I kind of didn't think I'd use these since I figured I may as well stay in the gown since I'd read about there being so much blood and mess and so many doctors and nurses wanting to check my lady bits. I stayed in the gown the day she was born but then was so glad to get into real clothes (such as they were) after my shower the next morning. The nursing tank made nursing easy but also gave me enough support to make me comfortable. The pajama pants were a very old and baggy pair that I wouldn't have minded tossing if they got ruined, but they came through just fine.
Going home outfit - I've seen some women say they'd just wear the dress they wore in. Good thing I didn't plan on that because it ended up soaked in amniotic fluid and thrown in the trash, but even if it hadn't, it was a maxi dress and my stomach went down enough that the front would have been dragging, I think. I wore a maternity t-shirt over my nursing tank with a stretchy jersey skirt that while not maternity had worked for my whole pregnancy. Also...
A second pair of flip flops - The first pair also got soaked in amniotic fluid. I wore them to shower so they'd get cleaned off but then it was nice to have a dry pair for wearing in the room.
Toiletries - shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, face wash and razor. (Oh no, I did not shave my legs in the hospital, but I did do my armpits.) Also face wash wipes and dry shampoo for before I felt like showering but wanted to feel less greasy. And some hair goop so it wouldn't be frizzy when I put it back in a messy bun. While I didn't really anticipate wanting to put on make up, I did bring bb cream, powder, and blush and ended up using all of it on the second and third day in an effort to feel like I didn't entirely resemble the Crypt Keeper.
Chapstick - this deserves its own entry because it was that important.
Fiber One Bars - my sister suggested these because not only can you use a snack at times, you also want to, you know, get things moving. Because I'd had an episiotomy, I was prescribed Colace and Miralax, but the bars couldn't have hurt in addition.
My own pillow - Again, I was told this was essential because hospital pillows are terrible. I ended up using the pillow I brought from home for sitting on. Much worse than hospital pillows is the hospital bed. It was nice to have something cushy, especially when getting into bed. I was also glad to have the pillow to sit on in the car on the way home.
An extra bag - to bring home all of the stuff you can take from the hospital. For us, this was diapers, wipes, and flannel blankets for the baby plus underwear, maxi pads, Tucks pads, and Proctofoam for me. (You guys, I highly recommend Proctofoam for all of your postpartum swelling needs.)
Going home baby outfit - She was very into being cozy at the time, so the sleeper I brought with footies and mittens worked out well. (The hat was a gift from the hospital. Volunteers knit them for the newborns.)
Didn't Use But Would Pack Again
Kindle, coloring book, and deck of cards - All of these would have been great, I'm sure, if I'd had a long labor or been stuck in the hospital longer.
Second pair of pajamas - Again, had I been in longer, I'm sure I would have wanted fresh pajamas.
Socks - They gave me the hospital grippy socks which I wore right away but soon was too warm to need. But they didn't take up that much room so it wouldn't hurt to throw in a pair again.
Granny panties - Actually some Hanes boyshorts which I bought in what I figured was my normal size but turned out to be kind of enormous. Which worked out well for the whole postpartum maxi pad set up. They gave me enough disposable underpants in the hospital to last me my whole stay and give me a stash to bring home, but again one pair didn't take up much room in the bag, so it didn't hurt to have them along.
Extra baby stuff - I packed an extra outfit in case she spit up or pooped on the one we put her in before we left. Also mittens, a diaper and a small sample pack of wipes and a pacifier. We didn't use any of it, but it didn't hurt to have it.
Wouldn't Pack Again
Bath Towel - I read everywhere and was told in one of the classes I took at the hospital that I'd want to bring my own towel because hospital towels are small and scratchy. So I brought a nice soft dark colored towel from home. Then I thought about having to pack a damp towel that potentially also had blood on it and decided to just use the small and scratchy hospital towel. It was fine.
Bath Robe - They gave me a hospital robe that I wore the couple of times I left my room to take my food tray out or ask at the nurses' station for a towel.
Raj brought a couple of changes of clothes and his toiletries, plus snacks that he didn't end up needing during labor since it went so quickly. He did wish he'd brought a button-down shirt for skin to skin time with Jo. He ended up taking off his t-shirt and zipping her up in his jacket, like so.
That's all I can think of right now. To be fair, I'm pretty sleep deprived, so I may be forgetting lots of important things. Feel free to add anything you were either glad to have, wished you'd had, or shouldn't have brought.